My mission statement

The times we are working in now need a great deal of accelerated change and there must be no negotiating that down. So my mission statement for this part of my consultancy career is to be clear that there needs to be and will be a lot of change from the work that I do with individuals and organisations and if organisations don’t want that, then it is probably best to go somewhere else.

Read my statement in full »

Choosing Health, Healthy Lives, Healthy People

Filed Under (Coalition Government, Health Policy, White Paper) by Paul on 30-11-2010

Tomorrow I will post the first of several comments on the nuts and bolts of the White Paper on public health published by the Coalition government on November 30th . The health of the nation is one of the most important topics that Government can address and this is an important document with several  important issues contained within it.. If fully implemented it will have an impact on the health of the country.

But today I just want to pick up on my comments in the last two posts. As I said the stance on public health that a Government takes, is a reflection on how it views the relationship between the state and the individual. And this White Paper contains clear statements about how it views that relationship.

It reflects the Government’s values of freedom, fairness and responsibility; it wants to promote healthy behaviours and it wants to adapt the environment to make healthy choices easier.

This makes lot of sense. But by saying this is a radical new approach is implies that previous governments’ were in favour of control, unfairness and irresponsibility; that it tried to promote unhealthy behaviour and tried to make unhealthy choices easier.

In fact this radical new approach is a continuation of the White Paper of 2004.

I am not saying that there is nothing new in this White Paper. There is, and I will discuss this in detail over the next few days. But I am saying the Coalition Government is trying, once more, to pretend that its philosophy is “new” and by doing so pretends that the previous government had, in some way, a reverse philosophy.

Not true.

The mechanics of how this Government wants to manage the state/people relationship will be different but the health improvement aims and philosophy are very similar.

I would expect in a few weeks time, as this White Paper gets into trouble, that we will hear the current Secretary of State dropping the idea that this is a radical new approach and confirming that it is, in fact, a continuation of the past.

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